I never thought the day would come when one man would be responsible for rebooting the two biggest sci-fi movie franchises of all time, but that one man, J.J. Abrams, was a huge fan of both and obviously the right man for the job. We have only seen one entry in the Star Wars franchise so far but it was a beautifully nostalgic film and a promising start to a new era of Star Wars. For Star Trek, released in 2009, Abrams put together the perfect cast of new actors to take up the classic roles and retained all the elements that made the classics great while updating it to make it fresh. It was a huge success and spawned one sequel that did very well but had some fans divided on some elements of the story. Now the Trek crew is back in a new installment, this time produced by Abrams but directed by Justin Lin of the Fast & Furious franchise, a man who knows his action. The result is Star Trek Beyond.
Half way into their five-year mission into deep space, the crew of the U.S.S. Enterprise is starting to find life in space monotonous, especially adventure seeker James Kirk (Chris Pine) who is starting to question his choice of career. After stopping at a new space station, Starbase Yorktown, the crew has some downtime to relax in a different environment. But their break is cut short when they are called back out on a distress call; surprise attacked and find themselves stranded on a remote planet with no means of communication. Now Kirk and his crew are separated and must find not only a way to find each other, but also a way to escape the planet and defeat the unknown force with a grudge against the Federation.
Star Trek Beyond, much like the first film, takes its cues from the original series only this time instead of the space mission they are concentrating on adventures on a distant planet’s surface. It was an interesting idea to leave the Enterprise behind for a whole movie but it works brilliantly. Lin has infused Star Trek Beyond with an incredible action dynamic making this the most action packed and actually the funniest of the Trek movies so far. It was a risky move to take the crew off the Enterprise but it was also risky to separate the entire cast for a good chunk of the movie. But it works and it works well. Star Trek Beyond is thrilling, full of eye-popping special effects, great laughs, spectacularly staged action sequences and most of all, it is great fun. I hope they plan on many more Star Trek movies with this cast and crew; they seem to really be knocking them out of the park. Not to mention the Blu-ray is one of most impressive hi def presentation of 2016. Star Trek Beyond is very highly recommended.